#763 – no easy way to say it

Like many parts of OP, the breakup was an amalgamation of different things I remember. The setting, the season, the car interior, the way I remember sitting, the way I remember him sitting, the direction of his gaze, my inability to look, the garbage, the car, the physical distance and the emotional distortion... it's all real. I wrote it down. What can someone do with all this information but tell a story? More to the point, what could I do? It's the only way I've learned to process it.

I don't know what the people who've exited my life think of my stories, if they read them. I didn't write them in the hopes that they'd ever see them. I just needed to write them, canonize them in a way, so I could move on to new questions, meditations, revelations, regrets. It gives me a feeling to reread the old stories, like the sadness and longing are still raw and alive inside of them. But they're static now; I can put them down and walk away.

5 thoughts on “#763 – no easy way to say it

  1. In my books, the "me" comes out in strange places and without me planning it. I'll send a draft to my wife for critique, and it'll come back with, among other things, a line highlighted that says "this is real, right?" What she means is "this actually happened to you" … and she's always right. I don't know how she knows, except to assume that it must ring just a touch more true to her than the rest of the story.

    I don't think there's a creator alive who doesn't use their art at least partially as a way to process their own lives. If there is, I have a hard time believing their stuff is particularly good.

  2. The first four panels of this story have stuck with me forever in how real they feel. My most painful breakup felt like this, like I had to make myself small, like I had to turn away and physically retreat as much as possible from the moment. I was 18 and thought my entire life was over. I had made a gift to give him (I had no idea what was coming) and was holding the box the entire time we spoke. When he left me sitting by the train stop, I had no idea what to do with it, and so I brought it home and it sat in my closet for years. I wonder if someone threw it away.

  3. This is the exact page that was up when I came to the OP website for the first time. I felt immediately interested in the story because I know what it’s like to be sitting in a car full of garbage while having a conversation like this. Those were such rough times.

  4. This breakup chapter reminded me of a friendship that ended between me, + a friend.
    She was trying to help me deal with a passing of a guy/buddy of mine.
    She offered to let me call her every day, so that I could talk about the grief that I had.
    I'm guessing that, although she said that she could handle these discussions, in reality she could not do that for me.

    The ending of that friendship was a fall-down-the-stairs-in-the-half-darkness type of a painful end.
    I don't begrudge her for the breakup, but I remember being so very mystified, + and sorrowed, by this friendship that got so incredibly broken, that year.

  5. It is very real how you remember all these little details whenever a heartbreaking or traumatic event occurs. We are wired to remember our traumas more deeply.

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